Chocolate-Coconut Pudding Pie
For my second of my 52 desserts/baked goods projects this year I decided to make a pie. I was just sitting on the couch, minding my own business when I suddenly popped up and declared I was going to make a pie! Around the holidays I saw a package of 2 frozen vegan pie shells at Whole Foods and never used them. This was the perfect opportunity to use at least one of them.
I started by pre-baking the pie shell. They didn’t come with any cooking instructions at all so I just put one in a 350 degree oven until it looked cooked which took over 20 minutes. Then I mixed together a quick mix of pudding ingredients: coconut milk, splash of almond milk, cocoa powder, arrowroot powder and sugar. Whisked it over a medium flame until it was nice and thick. Took it off the flame and added some vanilla and chocolate extract. Poured the pudding into the pre-baked pie shell and let it all cool for a few minutes before putting it in the fridge to cool completely overnight.
A slice o’ pie with some whip
The next day I whipped up some MimicCreme Healthy Top to go with the pie. I’ve never used this stuff before and I was very pleased with it. All I did was put it in the fridge to chill and then whipped it up like you would whipped cream. It was perfect. It wasn’t overly sweet, which went over well with my husband, and it was delicious. I will definitely buy this again if I ever find it again.
The pie was also delicious. My only issue was that it was a bit soupy. I’ve made it before without that problem so I’m not sure what happened this go around. Its something I’ll look into very soon since I have another pie crust waiting to be used.
Coconut Bacon BLT
It’s tomato season here in the Garden State. We have 3 types of heirlooms growing in our garden as well as some cherry tomatoes that grew from tomatoes that hung out in the garden all winter from last year! Once the tomatoes start to ripen all I want to eat are BLT’s. One of my all time favorite meals. Crispy bacon. Mayo. Tomatoes that taste like the sun shines. Perfect.
I’ve tried my hand at all different types of vegan BLT’s. Tempeh Bacon, Smart Bacon and of course Seitan Bacon. It’s all ok. My favorite though is my home made coconut bacon that I make with large flaked unsweetened coconut. This stuff is so good and so easy to make. I’ve been eating these sandwiches a few times a week when the tomatoes are perfect for eating.
The coconut bacon is really easy to make. Its 4 ingredients total. Takes minutes to put together and about 15-20 minutes to bake in the oven. BUT….you must, must, must stay near the over after the first initial 10 minutes of cooking. Ovens are temperamental, they have their own special “hot spots” and this bacon can burn the minute you walk away from your oven. Watch it like a hawk during the end of it’s cooking time.
makes 1 cup (3-4 sandwiches)
1 cup large flaked, unsweetened coconut
2 Tablespoons maple syrup
2 Tablespoons tamari
1 Tablespoon liquid smoke
Preheat oven to 350˚ and cover a baking tray with parchment paper.
Measure the coconut flakes into a small bowl. In another small bowl combine the maple syrup, tamari and liquid smoke and mix with a fork. Pour over the coconut and stir to combine. Making sure all the coconut flakes are covered.
Spread the coconut out evenly onto the already prepared baking tray. Bake for 10 minutes. Gently stir the coconut on the tray and bake for another 3-5 minutes under your watchful eye! Just keep peeking at it every minute or so. Gently stir again. Keep baking until the bacon gets slightly crisp and darkens a bit (I don’t mind a few burnt pieces). Shouldn’t take longer then 20 mintues. It will all depend on your oven. Take out of the oven and let cool. Store in an airtight container on your counter and use within 2 days (if it lasts that long in the first place!)
I was lucky the other day when Miles decided to grace us with a nap. He’s not like his sister was as a baby who would take two 2 hour naps a day at the same time every day. I’m lucky if his afternoon nap is more than 25 minutes. The other day I could just tell he was going to sleep awhile so I got busy cleaning the kitchen and then messing it up again while cooking a few things. It was nice to cook. I’m still cooking our dinner every night but they have been the same ol’ boring things you’ve seen on this site over and over again. It was just really nice to create and cook something new for a change!
While I was cleaning I noticed a butternut squash that was showing signs that it was needing to be used, very soon, like that day. I thought of roasting it as a side dish or making Kidney Bean and Butternut Veggie Burgers or a few other ideas. I ended up quickly throwing a soup together with it and I’m really happy I did. This soup was so silky, smooth, creamy and delicately spiced with cinnamon. It made a healthy amount that I stored away in the fridge and would heat up a mug of it for lunches and snacks for the next couple of days. The best part of the soup, to me at least, is that Miles LOVED it. The joy I had seeing my 9 month old baby devour this soup I made was wonderful. I froze small portions of the soup to save for him for another week while he enjoyed what I portioned out in the fridge for all of us. Sadly last night we finished off the soup. Luckily I randomly bought another butternut at Whole Foods the morning before which means I’ll be making this soup again for us this weekend!
2 Tablespoons olive oil
1 small onion, diced
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 medium sized butternut squash
(I peeled the squash then cut it in 1/2 lengthwise, scooped out the seeds and cut each 1/2 in 1/2 again lengthwise. Then sliced them into 1/4 inch slices.)
1 can coconut milk (13.5 fluid ounces)
1 chicken-less boullion cube
6 cups water
1 2 inch cinnamon stick
salt and pepper to taste
Heat olive oil over medium heat in a large soup pot. Saute the onion and garlic until the onion is translucent, about 3-5 minutes. Add the butternut squash and saute until the butternut starts showing signs of caramelization. Add the coconut milk, bouillion cube, water and cinnamon stick. Bring the soup to a boil and then cover, with lid slightly off to let steam escape. Lower to a simmer and cook, stirring occasionally until the squash is soft. Blend in a blender or with and immersion blender which is my favorite way of blending! Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve.